I know what you’d love to see. You’d love to see a Lamborghini Aventador warp by you at full throttle. The engine note alone will set your car alarm off, and force you to get hearing aids. I hope they work well. It can make your day to know that somebody is enjoying their supercar.
The polar opposite of that is the dark spot. That’s where you’ll find Captain Clueless, Corporal Crazy, and just about anything and anybody in between. It’s not your fault. My great-grandfather used to say, “Drive like everybody else on the road is an idiot.” some are. I say this with all the authority that I, as a new driver, can muster. A lot of authority, then…
Any person in a slow, smelly, tin can-mobile of a car, can ruin a perfectly good Sunday morning drive, or a high-speed freeway strafing run in your Corvette. The first trick is to know how to spot them a mile ahead. I’m still working on that. Just be safe in the knowledge that you’ll never, ever drive one of these cars as your personal whip:
- Toyota Prius: If the SUV was the status symbol of Captain Clueless in the 1990’s, guess what: He still is. But, his friends bought Toyota Prii, and are now doing their very best to get you pissed. I feel for you. Those who drive a Prius don’t care that they are going 45 in the fast lane. They want 60 mpg, and nothing is gonna get in their way. Try to be nice. Please – the Prius allows awesome Toyota products like the Tundra and the Land Cruiser to still be in production.
- Mercury Sable: The overly cautious type. Most don’t drive freeways. Those who still do make you swear up, down, and sideways, that you’ll never, ever, even THINK of exiting at that exit again. Seniors flocked to the badge-engineered Mercury Sable because they were too thrifty to step up to something like the more expensive Grand Marquis or Lincoln Town Car. A tip for those of you who have thrifty, cool, slightly nerdy parents: Put them into a Scion xB, or a 2014 Toyota Corolla. You’ll thank me later.
- Pontiac Firebird: Just like Burt Reynolds, the man who made the Firebird famous, the Firebird will never, ever go quietly away from a stoplight. It can’t do anything at a level quieter than a NASCAR engine at full throttle when it’s in gear. For those of you who drive one take this advice as the word of God. Dude, engineers worked overtime to keep everybody else’s ears from getting killed. USE IT! The neighborhood needs some sleep!
- Any White Windowless Cargo Van: Nothing, except for a Semi truck will completely and totally eclipse your view of the road. Common sense and nature tell you to approach with caution. Pass it normally, and you’ll need a sniffer dog to pull your body parts out of the wreckage. Just make sure that you pass this rolling Amber Alert with caution. Also, don’t look at the driver.
- Honda Insight: You could use some Insight when getting up on this hypermilermobile’s tail. These drivers will do anything in their power to get 60 mpg and beat their hippie buddies on bigfueleconomynumbers.com. They will do absolutely anything to get the most mpgs out of their tiny little car. They ignore all traffic laws in the quest for yet another tenth of a mile per gallon, and they don’t care if they caused a 10-car pileup in the middle of the intersection. Distractions cause their fuel economy to decrease. Wake up and smell the premium, Honda Insight drivers! It might save you a few bucks. Oh, and the worst part? It’s considered politically incorrect to laugh at their fender skirts. It’s true!
- Acura NSX: This car is spectacular, and so is it’s driver. Really, just ask him! His ego will always be sated by the car’s unspoiled aluminum beauty, and his bank account is happy because of the legendary Acura reliability. The VTEC is awesome! Yet, every single NSX that we see is being nursed along at a leisurely rate to avoid buying new $1,000-each tires every 3,000 miles, and coming to a complete and sudden stop every 700 feet because that snowplow of a front bumper will make a bulldozer run for mommy. The most practical supercar yet is so impractical that you’ll be doling out the finger and honks like you’ve never done before.
- HUMMER H2 SUT: Is it a Governatormobile, a military project ripoff, or a product planner joke? All of the above. It’s like it was never intended to be practical, useful, or even subtle. I will admit to a mancrush on the original H1, but then again, most guys do. All of that just adds up to making you pissed.
- Any Car That Has a Fartcan Muffler: If it makes a sound like a cow farting, put your air on recirculate, and get into the next lane, drop a gear, and floor it. These cars are typically driven by some poor guy who thinks that giving people headaches and getting bad looks in return is a good idea. Buddy, it’s not. Spare yourself the misery of getting the finger and put a flowmaster system on. The rest of the world will thank you.
- Pricey Minivans: Any minivan that costs over $40,000 should have the same amount of features as a Mercedes-Benz S550. Many don’t. If it doesn’t have an easy-clean interior, then that gets just about any clean freak mad. I’ve been asked multiple times, “Who takes a $100,000 Land Rover off road?” Auto journalists. My favorite retort? “Who puts the baseball team into a $40,000 minivan with a luxurious interior after a game?” That’s a serious case of irony right there. Honda had a $20,000 wipe-down-able vehicle called the Element which was cancelled because it didn’t sell well. Go figure. Yet, the Honda Odyssey costs almost $50,000 in it’s top level, and the top-of-the-line Odyssey comes with a vacuum.